May 12, 2008

How the Reagan-Lincoln Day Dinner Isn't Just Another Fundraiser

Carroll Andrew Morse

We don't generally promote specific political fundraising events here at Anchor Rising, but will point out that this Wednesday's Reagan-Lincoln Day Fundraiser at Rhodes-on-the-Pawtuxet is a little different from the kind of event that RI Republicans usually sponsor. Though this year's Reagan-Lincoln Day Dinner has been planned and advertised as a statewide gala, the money raised will not go to the state party account. Instead, 75% of the value of each ticket purchased will go to the local city or town Republican committee it was purchased from (the other 25% going to Rhodes to cover the expenses of the event).

It is worth noting that this event represents a movement within the Rhode Island Republican party amongst those who believe that the top-down strategies favored by party leadership in the recent past, i.e. focus on a few statewide offices and hope for coattails, have hit the wall, and that the party can only become competitive again by rebuilding its grass-roots strength in the cities and towns.

Comments, although monitored, are not necessarily representative of the views Anchor Rising's contributors or approved by them. We reserve the right to delete or modify comments for any reason.

Yes this is a very creative way for Laffey to attempt to build grassroots support for ...Laffey.
Be fun to see who shows up and more importantly who doesn't.

Posted by: Tim at May 12, 2008 7:18 PM


We're trying to raise money to help the local GOP committees to be better able to support local candidates in 2008. Right now, we're well ahead of where we were in 2006 for candidate recruitment, so it's necessary for us to raise additional funds, and we thought this would be a neat way to do it. Laffey stepped up to give it a jump start, but that's about it. It's being run and coordinated by volunteers. By the way, he already has plenty of grassroots support.

Feel free to come by ... as long as your check clears. Some tickets will be available at the door.

Posted by: Will at May 12, 2008 10:23 PM

No one has contributed more to local GOP candidates and committees in RI than Mayor Laffey, including the State GOP. Go to the Board of Elections web site and search by donor. Plug in Carcieri, plug in Ciccione, plug in Avedisian, plug in Chafee, plug in Jackvony, plug in RI State Central Committee. There is no other leader among RI Republicans more committed to helping local GOP candidates than Steve Laffey. Lets face it, there's no other leader, period. Those who claim Laffey is only looking out for himself, don't really know Laffey.

Posted by: Nilesh at May 12, 2008 10:40 PM

"White Hetero-Sexual ONLY Scholarship"
Sorry no "blacks,women,gays,lesbians, asians,or brown people need apply"

Yea Steve Laffey and his college papers

Good luck GOP,, in November 2008

Posted by: Guy in Coventry at May 12, 2008 11:26 PM

I'm sure that Laffey is helping to spearhead the event in order to generate goodwill with some of the local committees.

But in this case, I'd say good for him. He helps some local candidates and gets some good publicity. It's not like he is hurting other Republicans (ie: challenging an incumbent Republican when control of the Senate is at stake).

Every elected official and "leader" in the GOP should be doing the same thing as Laffey is doing. So yes, Laffey is about Laffey, but at least this time he's promoting himself in a way that helps other Republicans. And that's the way it should be.

Posted by: Anthony at May 13, 2008 12:47 AM

So Anthony, will you be putting your money where your mouth is and show up to help your local committee?

Posted by: George at May 13, 2008 8:37 AM

I agree with Old Time Lefty from another post that Laffey is yesterday's news. Anthony wrote that Laffey has hurt Republicans by running against Chaffee at a time when control of the Senate was at stake. Chaffee lost in the general only in same part by the efforts of Laffey in the primary. The national trend against Republicans was the most significant factor. Democrats and independents voted more for Democratic control of the Senate and less to oust Chaffee. Chaffee's political future looks fairly good at this point. Democrats and independents may want to repay him for his principled stance against the Bush war and the raiding of the treasury. Laffey's on the other hand is not so bright. His Republican party building may include cash for candidates as Nilesh alleges but his style is often confrontational and abrasive . I doubt one can build with a wrecking ball. The other thing that is working against Laffey in a statewide run is that he is yesterday's news. In two years time how many voters will remember the former mayor of Cranston. His big achievement as far as the public may dimly remember was firing some old ladies... crossing guards or was it lunch ladies . The retelling of the minutia of a city mayor's battles years past won't electrify voters.

Posted by: Phil at May 13, 2008 8:52 AM

Chafee lost, and Carcieri almost did, almost wholly because the casino initiative dragged out every conceivable democratic voter. I don't think the national anti-Bush feeling or even the decisive primary with Laffey had that much to do with it.

Posted by: observer at May 13, 2008 10:38 AM

Phil and Tim, PLEASE encourage Chafee to run. PLEASE. And go pour out your hearts and souls working for him. Max out your contribution to his campaign. P L E A S E !!!

Anthony - you on board too?

Posted by: Nilesh at May 13, 2008 11:36 AM

"his style is often confrontational and abrasive ."

Yeah, if you're a blood-sucking leech...

If you're a blood-sucking leech and someone tries to flick you off, or apply some preventive or remedial measure... sure that might be construed as "confrontational and abrasive".

Laffey's the only one with the guts to confront the crooks and thieves who have had a party with our money for years and who are ruining the state. He's the only possible candidate for Governor with a track record of reform. All the other names trumpeted in political circles as 2010 Gov. candidates have had a hand in creating the mess and never fixed anything in their lives.

Posted by: George at May 13, 2008 5:20 PM

Laffey lost his own ward in which he lives to Chaffee in the primary. That means his neighbors and those who had time to see his act over the years voted against him. Does reform = three tax increases? Of course he's got support. His brand of populism will always attact true believers. There has not been many politicians in R.I. who have lost statewide contests and gone on to win another. Think Licht, York, Paolino, Mayer etc. There must be some who have but all I can come up with is Sundlun.

Posted by: Phil at May 13, 2008 9:40 PM

John Chafee was elected to the Senate in '76 after Frank Licht knocked him out of the gov's office in '68. Chafee also lost in '72 when he challenged Claiborne Pell.

Posted by: rhody at May 14, 2008 12:47 AM

here are a few additional examples of people in RI who lost statewide and then came back and won:

Whitehouse, lost in 02 governor primary, won senate in 06

Almond lost congress in 68, lost governor in 78, and won gov in 94

Solomon lost governor in 84, won treasurer in 88

Violet lost AG in 82, won AG in 84

Schneider lost congress in 78, won congress in 80

B. Leonard lost senate in 78, won sec. of state in 94

There are more, but I think you get the point

Posted by: Get a Clue at May 14, 2008 11:18 AM

Laffey took a principled stand against interfearing with a legally obtained permit for a Cement plant to expand in an industrial park in his neighborhood. The positions he took as mayor, although sometimes controversial, always favored the good of all citizens over smaller special interests. The path the new mayor has taken on that issue alone will cost the taxpayers, all taxpayers, at least $1.9 million.

Your statements about his legitimacy show how out-of-touch you are. Just last month the Providence City Council was about to illegally sell the Water Supply (that they don't even own) and cause water rates to go up for many cities and towns in the state. Laffey put a stop to that with a single op-ed piece.

That is why more and more people are coming to realize his value. He knows far more than your typical elected hack knows and he is very effective at selling and implementing reforms.

And, so typically, you bring up the tax increases in Cranston. All three tax increases were approved by the Democrat-controlled city council and implemented BEFORE his nearly 4 to 1 landslide re-election. The city was in such good shape, the bond rating up 8 notches, taxes did not have to be raised in his second term.

Laffey will be SO relevant by the time we get to 2010 that the man on the street may be hard-pressed to name who else is running.

Posted by: George at May 14, 2008 12:44 PM

It is pretty much common knowledge that Laffey only lost in his district because the concrete plant was approved on his watch and some neighbors didn't want it.
Two things can be gotten from this. First, Laffey isn't the type to poll voters to decide what is the right thing to do. The much needed additional taxes trumped a few homeowners petty NIMBY concerns. Interestingly, these same NIMBY twits are the same ones whining about their taxes - go figure.
Second, it has been proven, after two years, that the cement batching plant was properly permitted (and twice approved by DEM), and that the property owners had every right to use their property according to how it was zoned.
The fact that the city is paying $1.9m to stop it from going forward is proof that they knew they were going to lose in court. Despite all of the protestations of illegally granted permits, yada, yada, yada, nobody, I repeat NOBODY, has been able to stop the plant from going forward on any of those charges. Care to guess why?
From this, Phil, I would think Laffey might be just the kind of guy you could support. Unless, of course, you are one of the NIMBY twits, a crossing guard or lunch lady, or some other leech-like being.

Posted by: Jim at May 14, 2008 3:39 PM

Lotsa Laffey fans here once again.

First comment by Tim was groovy. Dinner is Laffey Fest '08. Means to undermine RIGOP.

Discussion always becomes yeah Laffey/yeah Chaffee/Laffey sucks/Chaffee sucks. Tired and old.

I'm not a RINO but not an EGO either. Anybody but the ego in '10. He couldn't care less about the party. All about him.

Go to it all you Laffey support socks (google sockpuppet if you don't know what it is).

Posted by: Sockpuppet at May 14, 2008 6:16 PM

Tim wrote:

"Be fun to see who shows up and more importantly who doesn't" at the Reagan-Lincoln Dinner.

Hmmm. Lets see who was there.

I see Governor Carcieri, the First Lady. I see GOP state represenatives. I see GOP Chairman Ciccione. Wow, I even see Avedisian and Pat Morgan.

Oh, I don't see "Tim" the perpetual Anti-Laffey blogger here at anchor rising.

Maybe we will see him next year after he gets over his angry, hurt feelings.

Posted by: Romper Room at May 15, 2008 10:23 AM


Laffey in '10 is inevitable and people like you are the reason why.

google that

Posted by: Nilesh at May 15, 2008 1:26 PM

And the true Sockpuppet speaks. Read the book.

Anger issues Nilesh. Belief in Cranston Mayor as Demi-God.

Google "insane". Google "divisive". Google "meglomania". Google "white knight syndrome".

Three or four people with fifteen or twenty identities on one or two blogs does not make inevitability any more real than it does in the delusional head of the one you worship.

Posted by: Sockpuppet at May 15, 2008 2:00 PM

Get A Clue, I appreciate you know the facts you stated. Losing candidates can win future elections especially if they are credible and the conditions are right.
I enjoy political history. A good web site is The Political Graveyard ,.This is run by a county official in Micjigan who is a Democrat.
I am listed and some other family members. Check out Bill-Hirst Family. Needs updating on this category. Updates are being made or have been recently made on this site.

Posted by: Scott Bill Hirst at May 15, 2008 5:57 PM

Correction ,. It appears likely that RI DEMS will have a brutal primary for Governor in 2010,. I find it interesting Patrick Lynch is mentioned as a possibility for Governor. The Station Night Club Fire handling I think hurts Lynch in a race for Governor.

Posted by: Scott Bill Hirst at May 15, 2008 6:02 PM
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